A dedicated female police officer and a loving foster carer broke into tears as her unusual final wish was granted.
75-year-old Rita Meredith, who is believed to be the world’s first female mounted police officer, has made her final wish known to her family after being placed into a palliative facility in Australia.
As the hardworking lady requested, she wanted to see and smell police horses for one final time after having served in law enforcement since she was in her 20s.
According to Rita’s family, the elderly lady always loved being around horses, whereas she was accepted into her job as a mounted police officer back when she was still living in the UK.
To make Rita’s final wish come true, NSW Mounted Police traveled all the way from Redfern, Sydney, to Calvary Mater Newcastle Hospital in Waratah to allow two steeds, Don and Hollywood, to meet the 75-year-old.
“She thought they were absolutely beautiful, and couldn’t believe that the police took the time to drive the five-hour round trip just to see her,” Robert Parnaby, Rita’s son, admitted in an interview with Daily Mail Australia.
As the senior lady’s daughter-in-law Emily Sykes added, “there were plenty of tears shed and beautiful memories made” during the bittersweet exchange.
“Police officers Graham and Nicole were accompanied by the very handsome Hollywood and Don and they sure made Rita’s day (and all the staff that were awestruck!)” Emily wrote in her Facebook post.
“They were amazingly patient, answered all our questions and let Rita (and the rest of us) pat them and feed them apples.”
As Emily revealed, her mother-in-law is not doing okay and is not expected to make a recovery or return home from palliative care.
“She is spending her days at the hospice at Calvary mater in Newcastle being very well looked after. Her main wish before she passed was to smell/see a horse for one more time,” she added.
Proving that her mother-in-law was dedicated to her job, Sykes also shared a 1967 photo in which Rita is seen riding a horse while meeting Queen Elizabeth.
“When meeting the queen mum her horse Neville tried to eat the fur on the cuff of the Queen mum’s coat, the queen mum laughed it off and said how wonderful it is to have a girl in that job,” Robert added.
Besides working as a police officer, Rita also dedicated a fair share of her life to being a foster carer for children with disabilities.
As Robert told Daily Mail Australia, his family moved to Australia back in 1991. Since then, Rita cared for over sixty foster children before finally deciding to retire.
“Since then she has been a foster carer for children with a disability only giving that up around 10 years ago. She had 61 kids through the house over the years,” the proud son added.
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